I'm subsidising DD's friend's lunches.

(115 Posts)
VioletBam Tue 24-May-16 09:59:01

Not daily but 3 days a week.

DD is 8 and attends a small private school (we're not in UK). She has in the past come back from school and said "I shared my cake with X because she was still hungry"

It's not always cake either but sandwiches etc.

Her friend is thin as a rail but seems healthy and happy. On questioning DD I realised that her little friend spends the night at her Dad's on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, she's not getting enough in her packed lunch on Wed, Thurs and Fri.

Her Dad is friendly and pleasant but lives in quite reduced circumstances (In an old bus basically)

He is allowed to live where he lives...it's on land he rents...he isn't well off obviously but I don't think he's deliberately neglecting his DD...he loves her and she him. He's a hippy type and thin himself.

The friend's Mum is nice too but I don't know her well enough to say anything. I baulk at the idea of mentioning it to DDs teacher as he is friendly with both parents! It's a tiny community.

Should I say something or just carry on putting extra in DDs box?

I should also mention that DD's friend's Mother feeds her well and DD has been there to play and always has a lovely time. They are nice people.

I asked DD what a typical lunch was for her mate and it seems to be things like "An apple and some bread" or once "Some nuts"

TheWitTank Tue 24-May-16 10:00:46

I would speak to the school and let them know. They can mention to the parents that their DD appears hungry after lunch.

VioletBam Tue 24-May-16 10:01:38

I'm uncomfortable doing that...I shouldn't be should I?

Lelloteddy Tue 24-May-16 10:02:55

You need to speak to the school.

RaeSkywalker Tue 24-May-16 10:03:13

Please speak to the school. I'm sure they'll handle it sensitively.

imposteracademic Tue 24-May-16 10:03:16

I would mention to school too. I understand about being uncomfortable but I would. What about other food at home when the DD is at her Dad's? Definitely worth raising.

Only1scoop Tue 24-May-16 10:03:33

I'd pop extras in on those days.

I know it's not the right thing to do but in your shoes I wouldn't want to tell teacher either.

Aww bless your dd sharing

sianihedgehog Tue 24-May-16 10:05:31

Why not just tell the dad? Pop by when you know his daughter isn't there and apologise for intruding, and say you've come to see him rather than potentially embarrassing him and just tell him that his daughter is hungry at lunch. He's probably one of those "forget to eat" types and has been giving her the same quantity of food since she was much smaller and less hungry.

WorraLiberty Tue 24-May-16 10:05:35

Why don't you tell your DD to suggest to her friend that she gets her Dad to bung an extra sandwich in? confused

Kids are very good at making 'awkward' conversations seem normal.

What does she normally take in her lunch box?

Mine just took a sandwich (2 slices of bread), a piece of fruit and a biscuit, which was more than enough for them.

Other kids took banquets and would share with others, not because the others were still hungry, but because they had too much food/cake etc.

EDisFunny Tue 24-May-16 10:06:19

You and your daughter are being lovely. The school needs to know though, a child cannot be sent to school with just a handful of nuts or a piece of bread.

Sukebind Tue 24-May-16 10:06:59

It's better coming from the school than you. I don't think they will think you are being nosy or are interfering. The little girl will be happier and more ready to learn if she has had enough to eat. Although this is a bit of an extreme case it needn't be presented as such; lots of parents find it difficult to strike the right balance in how much to include in a packed lunch. The reception teachers when Dd1 started school had to keep telling parents they were making the lunches too big and the children were struggling to finish them. The school need not mention to the dad that his dd is having to rely on your own child's lunch.

Only1scoop Tue 24-May-16 10:07:26

If it's a small setting its possibly been noticed by staff

LyndaNotLinda Tue 24-May-16 10:11:05

If her family can afford to send her to a private school, they can afford to feed her. It's not acceptable to send a child to school with nothing to eat bar a handful of nuts.

Tell the school. It's neglect

whois Tue 24-May-16 10:13:50

If her family can afford to send her to a private school, they can afford to feed her. It's not acceptable to send a child to school with nothing to eat bar a handful of nuts.

Exactly. Tell the school, they will (or should!) handle it with care. The girl needs to take some responsibility though - why doesn't she tell her dad it isn;t enough? Or tell her mum and her mum can send her with an extra cereal bar the day before or something? Or the mum tell the dad?

Arfarfanarf Tue 24-May-16 10:18:31

You need to tell the school.
Feeding your child is such a basic thing that i would wonder what else he is failing to take care of if he can't even provide his child with adequate nourishment.

He needs someone to have a word with him, not pick up his slack.

InternationalHouseofToast Tue 24-May-16 10:18:38

OP, as you're not in the UK, is there an equivalent of state schools or are all children effecitvely in private schools where you are?

I would raise it with the school but put in a bit extra in your DD's lunchbox for now as it may not be sorted immediately if her DF is short of money.

Damselindestress Tue 24-May-16 10:21:11

I'd speak to the school. The girls's father may mean well but those lunches aren't enough and it needs to be addressed. What if he is not feeding her properly while she is staying there? Maybe he is struggling and needs some support. Don't turn a blind eye. It's sweet of your DD to share but it doesn't solve the underlying problem.

EarthboundMisfit Tue 24-May-16 10:21:40

I would speak to school.

Taytocrisps Tue 24-May-16 10:24:40

I think I'd mention it to the school. If the child's not getting an adequate lunch, the teacher can check this and raise it with the Dad. It's also possible that the Dad is supplying an adequate lunch but the friend prefers your DD's lunch.

longdiling Tue 24-May-16 10:25:11

Speak to the school, there may well be some embellishments and exaggeration going on here. They are far better placed than you to work out whether she has a suitable lunch box.

APlaceOnTheCouch Tue 24-May-16 10:26:01

I suppose you could mention it to the teacher but your DD may have got it confused.

We've had this at different points with DS' friends. One of them used to eat their snack on the way to school; their lunch at snack time and by lunchtime they had nothing to eat. Their parent wasn't being neglectful - the DD was just eating it all earlier than planned grin

Last year, it was a different DC. They ate their snacks before school and when it came to break, they had nothing to eat. I just packed an extra item in DS' bag so if his friend was hungry at snacktime, he could give them something.

Verbena37 Tue 24-May-16 10:39:58

You haven't mentioned which country you're in but perhaps nuts and bread is a normal lunch for them? Nuts are high in fat and protein and bread has carbs. I realise she is hungry but if you can afford to keep putting a bit extra in for her, do that for now and just casually mention it to school/teacher.

ScreenshottingIsNotJournalism Tue 24-May-16 10:40:06

Tell the school just in case

but on the flip side, I was too generous as a child.. and it sounds like something I would do

It's possible that the kid IS getting enough food when she stays with her dad, but it's boring healthy hippy rabbit food…. and when she sees your DD with mainstream sambos and cake she wants some..

And now your DD is in the habit of it because she's a generous type

My kids say "I'm hungry" when they want treats… even if they've got a back pack full of healthy snacks that they're turning down!

TheWanderingUterus Tue 24-May-16 10:45:05

Tell the school. DDs school has a 'no sharing' policy because of allergies, arguments and poorly prepared/contaminated food. Some children were also forcing others to give up the desirable parts of their lunches by force, guilt tripping or manipulation.

It also helps them in situations like this where you/ your DD are covering up for the shortcomings of another parent- however well-intentioned. The school cant help with a problem if they don't know about it. What happens when your DD is off sick or away? Or you get sick of providing extra food for months and months? Or you only have enough food for your DD (haven't shopped or change in circumstance)? Or she eats something her parents wouldn't want her to eat and they complain to the school?

timelytess Tue 24-May-16 10:50:14

This could also be a bullying situation, despite the two being friends. Or an 'assertion of dominance' rather than straight out bullying.

Send an extra packed lunch, labelled with the other girl's name. Your dd can tell her 'My mum wants me to eat all my lunch, so she made another one for you today but she won't do it again. She'll ask your mum to make more food for you, if you like, but I have to eat all my lunch myself.'

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